Effects of a Home Visiting Program on Parenting: Mediating Role of Intimate Partner Violence




M. Ann Easterbrooks, Rebecca C. Fauth, and Renee Lamoreau

Brief Type

Journal publication


  • Healthy Families America (HFA)


Young women aged 18 to 24 years are in the highest risk group for intimate partner violence (IPV), and adolescent mothers are at particularly high risk for IPV and for risky health behaviors. Exposure to IPV may contribute to parenting stress and risky behaviors, and may compromise parenting behavior and healthy child development. The present study examined whether program effects of a statewide home visiting program for adolescent parents on young mothers' parenting stress and risky behaviors measured 2 years post program enrollment were mediated by program effects on their exposure to IPV measured 1 year post enrollment. Using longitudinal data from a subsample of young mothers (n = 448; 58% program, 42% control) who participated in a randomized controlled trial evaluation of a statewide home visiting program, Healthy Families Massachusetts (HFM), we estimated path analyses to examine whether home visiting program effects observed on IPV mediated home visiting program effects on subsequent assessments of parenting distress and mothers' risky behaviors. Findings indicated that IPV mediated associations between home visiting program effects on mothers' parenting distress and risky behavior. Although most newborn home visiting programs do not have an explicitly stated goal of reducing IPV, helping mothers and their partners to reduce violent behavior can have further-reaching impacts on other key goals of home visiting programs, such as parenting stress and risky behaviors. (author abstract)

Data Collection Methods

  • Standardized assessment tools



For More Information

Easterbrooks, M. A., Fauth, R. C., & Lamoreau, R. (2017). Effects of a home visiting program on parenting: Mediating role of intimate partner violence. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. Advance online publication. http://doi.org/10.1177/0886260517736879
Author Contact Information:
M. Ann Easterbrooks


  • Participant Characteristics
  • Participant, Family, and Program Outcomes